Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

Barbados / Bajan Curry Chicken Roti Recipe

7 posts in this topic

Morning all.

 

If you've ever holidayed or lived in Barbados, chances are you've had your life saved by a Curry Chicken Roti from a Chefette. Possibly the greatest fast-food ever. But, in case you hadn't noticed, Chefette hasn't yet ventured into the German market, so if you want to experience that curry chicken, potato and buttery wrap goodness in the confines of the Bundesrepublik, you're going to have to fly solo. You can do it thusly:

 

Authentic “Chefette-Style” Bajan Chicken and Potato Roti

 

Recipe is enough for 4-6 filled rotis, depending on the size of the chicken breasts. The recipe is very forgiving – so if the balance of spuds to chook is off one way or another, they’ll still taste delicious. One roti will be enough for a normal appetite; two if you're really Hank Marvin.

 

Rotis

(If you must make your own. To be quite frank, shop-bought flour tortillas, each one fried one-side-only for 2-3 minutes in ½ tsp of ghee are just as good for the wrap)

 

450g of plain flour

100g of unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces and left to soften at room temperature

Salt

Water

 

Filling

 

2 tbps groundnut oil

4 large free-range or organic* chicken breasts cubed in 2cm-ish cubes

Leaves from 10 sprigs of fresh tyhyme

4 heaped tbsps Madras (or any decent hot – NOT German brand) Curry Powder

A few twists of black pepper

2 medium onions - chopped

4 cloves of garlic – finely chopped / 1 heaped tsp garlic puree

1 whole scotch bonnet / habanero pepper

450g potatoes

Salt to taste

 

Heat the oil in large pre-heated sauté pan or skillet and brown the cubed chicken. Reduce the heat to medium, and add the chopped onions, garlic, thyme, curry powder, black pepper and the whole scotch bonnet pepper - do not cut up the pepper! (unless, of course, you want 5-star Inferno-Style Fling-Open-The-Gates-Of-Hades-Hot rotis) Cover the skillet and reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes.

 

Aside: I use a Berndes “Titanium” 32cm cast aluminium sauté pan for much of my cooking; it’s the bloomin’ business. It can go on the hob (gas/leccy/ceramic – but not induction), it can go in the oven, and you can buy a tempered glass lid and a couple of silicon sleeves to pop over the “D” handles. To cap it off, it looks good enough to use to serve at the table. Top product; linky.

 

If you’re being hardcore and making your own Roti wraps, sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add a pinch of salt. Add the first lump of softened butter, and rub the butter in to the flour. It will start to form a breadcrumb-like consistency. Repeat until all six lumps of butter have been incorporated into the flour. Now add a little water and mix using a flexible spatula. Keep adding small amounts of water until your mixture forms a soft, but only just pliable, dough. Dust a surface (I use a Lakeland pastry rolling mat) with flour, divide dough into twelve balls and roll out to a tortilla-like thickness to 6" / 15cm rounds. Cover with a tea towel until needed.

 

Meanwhile, back at the filling, peel the potatoes and cube into small bite size pieces, and rinse. Try not to use too floury or too waxy potatoes, as you want them to be squishy once cooked, but not completely disintegrated. Add 1 pint of boiling water to the chicken curry mixture and add the potatoes to the pot. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for a further 20-30 minutes on a low heat, until the potatoes are tender and have started to “melt” into the chicken curry. NB. When you add the water and spuds to the curry, you’ll probably think that there’s too much liquid; there isn’t.

 

To prepare your home-made rotis, or shop-bought flour tortillas, for each one use ½ tsp of ghee (or clarified butter if you ain’t got ghee), plop into a very hot non-stick frying pan, and cook each roti (both sides) for 2-3 minutes until browning (but not completely crisp – unless you’ve given up on the roti idea, and fancy nachos instead) or each tortilla (one-side-only) for 1-2 minutes until browning off.

 

Stack ‘em up and cover with a tea towel while you’re doing the rest. Freeze the leftovers.

 

To serve, put about double the filling onto the roti / tortilla as you would put filling into a fajita, and fold over one side (to make the “bottom”) and then two parallel sides to create a pocket. If using tortillas, fill the non-cooked side. The filling will be quite “solid” – so unlike a fajita, it shouldn’t come squirting out of the “wrong” end once you start eating. Remember to remove the whole Habanero...

 

The whole process should take less than an hour. Hope you enjoy.

 

K

 

*it’s an animal welfare thing, nothing to do with comparative flavour (although I do think that an organic chicken does taste better than a broiler if you’re just doing a plain old roast chicken; once you’ve curried the bugger, you’d need a mass spectrometer to tell the difference taste-wise.

6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello, thanks for posting this!! After spending a month in Barbados many years back, I have been dreaming of Chefette Curry Rotis and an ice cold Banks Beer. I will be trying your recipe this week! Have you found the homemade rotis have the same spiciness as the Chefette's?

 

I also enjoyed how you wrote the instructions, very humorous!!

 

Cheers!!

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Have you found the homemade rotis have the same spiciness as the Chefette's?

 

 

They sure do - and you can adjust the curry powder as necessary to up the heat. I cannot stress strongly enough that you should not use any of the German curry powder brands - you need a proper Indian one like Geeta's.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know nothing of bajan cooking, sadly, but are these roti breads similar to malay roti? more of a batter than a dough almost?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A bit "breadier" than Malay roti - but along the same lines - lots of butter in the mix (hence the cheat of frying shop-bought tortillas in ghee, which gives you almost the same effect, but with mucho less effort).

 

 

I know nothing of bajan cooking, sadly

 

The problem with trying Bajan cooking outside of the Caribbean is that it's hard* to get the core ingredients (unless you're in a place where there's a large ex-pat / second- / third-generation West Indian community - e.g. Birmingham, Brixton). Breadfruit (which makes amazing "chips") and flying fish just don't feature in your average ReeWee.

 

On the subject of flying fish, watching the women at Six Mens Bay fillet and de-fin the fish, which have been freshly landed minutes ago, then going and having your portion dipped in seasoned flour and fried right in front of your eyes, then eating them together with a salad, breadfruit chips, hot sauce and a "mini" of Mount Gay with Coke, is just about one of the most wonderful and memorable epicurean moments anyone could hope for in their life. Just perfect. I love that island (as long as you stay away from Sandy Lane etc. - alright for some, just not for me and Mrs K).

 

K

 

*for D-Land, read "nigh-on impossible"

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some Asian shops sell frozen roti that is basically frozen batter almost, and pan fries in about a minute from the freezer. Not bad either

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I love that island (as long as you stay away from Sandy Lane etc. - alright for some, just not for me and Mrs K).

Spent far too many evenings getting drunk in St Lawrence Gap and that was back in the day when you could still walk there from Sandy Beach along the shoreline. How things have changed since I went there

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0